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Publisher's Summary

Chuck Noll won four Super Bowls and presided over one of the greatest football dynasties in history, the Pittsburgh Steelers of the 70s. Later inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, his achievements as a competitor and a coach are the stuff of legend. But Noll always remained an intensely private and introspective man, never revealing much of himself as a person or as a coach, not even to the players and fans who revered him.

Chuck Noll did not need a dramatic public profile to be the catalyst for one of the greatest transformations in sports history. In the nearly four decades before he was hired, the Pittsburgh Steelers were the least successful team in professional football, never winning so much as a division title. After Noll's arrival, his quiet but steely leadership quickly remolded the team into the most accomplished in the history of professional football. And what he built endured well beyond his time with the Steelers - who have remained one of America's great NFL teams, accumulating a total of six Super Bowls, eight AFC championships, and dozens of division titles and playoff berths.

©2016 University of Pittsburgh Press (P)2017 Tantor

What listeners say about Chuck Noll

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One of the Best Football books available

Any additional comments?

I learned so much about 1950s-1980s football. The story is excellent. Anyone who has ever played a sport under a "tough" coach will appreciate this work. The writing is succinct and the story of Noll's life is satisfyingly crafted. The narration is also outstanding. This is a slam-dunk Audible purchase.

*I hope that more books like this are written and become available on Audible in the future.

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Fantastic!!!

This is a story about the complete man, not just Chuck Noll and football. I can’t recommend this book enough.

3 people found this helpful

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Must listen!

Must listen for any native or current Pittsburgher. A great study in character and leadership, but also relatable to most careers and families. Tremendous!

3 people found this helpful

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A true story of leadership and character

Chuck Noll’s presence not only helped shape and define what the Pittsburgh Steeler organization represents to this day, but also made a positive impact on the many people whose lives he touched. This book goes beyond football, illustrating how Chuck Noll spent his entire life striving to be the best person he could be while also helping others realize their true potential for personal greatness. The narrator was excellent and the story was great. One of the best audible purchases I’ve made!

1 person found this helpful

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Much respect for Chuck Knoll

Disclaimer: Browns fan. : )
This is sort of a coming full circle moment for me. As a boy I learned to hate the Pittsburgh Steelers, Terry Bradshaw, Chuck Knoll, etc. My experience with the Browns vs Steelers rivalry was during Sipe and Brandshaw years, then Bernie Kosar and, well, yeah. I began first by watching old John Facenda-narrated highlight films of the first 4 Steelers' super bowls. John Facenda could read a phone book and make it sound exciting. The super bowls they won against Dallas and the Rams, those became my favorite super bowls to re-watch. As I did more research, I was shocked to learn Chuck Knoll was from Cleveland!!! played for the Browns! and Paul Brown! wow! Bill Cowher played for the Browns, and coached under Marty. This is getting interesting. Then I became a fan of Merril Hodge the week before the Browns lost their 3rd AFC title game to the Denver Broncos. That week, I watched stunned, my eyes glued to the television set, as Knoll's Steelers went into Mile High Stadium, during the 1989 playoffs, and nearly knocked off John Elway and the Denver Broncos in one of the most awe inspiring performances by a team, a coach, and Merril Hodge, that I have ever witnessed. Knowing that if they'd have pulled it out, they likely would have come into Cleveland for the AFC championship, and yes, beaten the Browns, All this, after having been blown out by the browns 51-0, 17 weeks earlier. It was probably Knoll's best coaching season.
Steeler fans, what more do you want me to say?

I respect you Steelers.

Maybe someday soon we will will turn it around like you did in the 70s.

Go Browns...

I am glad to have listened to this audio book.
It helped me to understand why some coaches are the way they are, and why they keep a safe distance from their players.
I like his basic philosophy " We're not going to change things. We're just going to get better" and "You've got to know what you're doing" and then "Go do it" .

I was happy to learn that Chuck's former players made peace with him years after being cut or replaced by new draftees.

I am puzzled at how insecure Bradshaw was. As a Browns fan, he came across overwhelmingly confident and cocky to the point that he would find a way to drive a dagger through our hearts. Did chuck and his scouts simply not pick up on how fragile he was? I was surprised to learn that Terry was drafted by the Steelers long before their dominance and struggled in obscurity before putting it together at the right time. That kind of patience is not found in today's game. Today, if a top drafted quarterback doesn't win by his 2nd season, I can think of countless examples, he's labeled a bust and is run out of town and is lucky to land on another team. That's the thing, He made his choice and stuck to it, committed to molding Bradshaw. This is unheard of today.

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Pittsburgh Steeler fan

A must read if you are a Steelers fan who lived through the 1970’s to the early 1990’s.

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One of my favorite Audible books!

Well written and well narrated. I loved listening to the book. It's more than a football or coach's book. I love coach autobiographies and leadership / culture books. This is a biography about a coach that also indirectly speaks of Noll's leadership / culture within the greater context of the man as a whole. It is a life story instead of a book on tactics or football. Any life or coaching principles in the book are left for the reader to discern for themselves within the context of the life story. While the Steelers were an important part of Noll's life - this is not a book solely about the Steelers. You can appreciate this book and Noll's life without being a football fan at all.

I knew very little of Noll, probably less than all of the other great coaches, other than he was a great coach. The author did an incredible job and I thank him for his efforts to introduce Chuck Noll to the world. It actually bothers me more people have not read this book. While different, this book is as good, if not better, than books on Bill Walsh or John Wooden or any other coach. While not necessarily a football book, it did make me hate the Raiders even more, which being a Broncos fan, I did not know was possible.

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great book for any football fan

Noll is obviously a legend for football fans, and this book is a rare glimpse into what made him the man we all recognized.

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Excellent book

Doesn’t get any.better. Keeps you interested from beginning to the end. Allows you to see inside the mind of the greatest coach ever.

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  • David
  • 03-07-18

A must for any Steelers fan

An in depth insight into the life of Chuck Noll that goes so much further than football. Having supported the Steelers since childhood, I enjoyed the coverage of the games and players that I grew up with. But it was Chuck Noll the man that really shines through. Very well read by Sam Runnette.

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  • Wally
  • 12-18-20

A must for any Steeler fan in the 70s!

This is a comprehensive story of one of the greatest coaches in NFL history. You feel like you really know what made Chuck tick and how he was such a renaissance man after reading this book.

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  • Paul Ryan
  • 10-23-17

a great man and a great story<br />

loved it. brings the story of the man behind the steel and why they love him so much.